CENTENARY (1-17, 0-8 Mid-Con) at VALPARAISO (12-8, 6-3 Mid-Con)
WHEN: Saturday, February 5, 2005, 2:05 p.m. CST.
WHERE: Athletics-Recreation Center (5,000), Valparaiso, Ind.
RADIO: WVUR (95.1-FM) and on the internet at www.valpo.edu/athletics. Brent Whitlock and Andrew Stem will call all of the action.
THE COACHES: Valparaiso is led by Keith Freeman, who is in his 17th season of coaching, and 11th with the Crusaders. He is 316-173 overall and 187-126 at Valpo. Centenary is led by Elizabeth Wamsley, who is 1-17 in her 1st season overall and with the Ladies.
SERIES RECORD: Valparaiso leads the all-time series with Centenary 3-0. The Crusaders won the only other meeting at the ARC, 66-49, on January 26, 2004.
LAST MEETING: Valpo raced out to a 10-0 lead and never looked back on the way to a 79-56 victory over the Ladies back on January 3 in Shreveport, La. Tamra Braun led five Crusaders in double-figures with 13 points, while grabbing eight rebounds. Lauren Bechtold added 12 points and five assists. Laura Kizyte led Centenary with 13 points while Holli Wilkins added ten points and seven steals.
Valparaiso will look to bounce back from Monday's two-point loss to Oakland when the Crusaders entertain Centenary on Saturday afternoon at the Athletics-Recreation Center.
PLAYING DEFENSE IN LEAGUE PLAY: Valpo is allowing just 52.2 points per game during Mid-Continent Conference play. Opponents are shooting just 35.8% from the floor against the Crusaders in league play and are committing 16.3 turnovers per game.
CRUSADERS AMONG NATION'S BEST: The Crusaders' 13.3 turnovers per game through January 31 ranked as the sixth fewest in the country. Valpo is also 14th in fewest personal fouls committed at 13.9 per contest. Individually, Tamra Braun's 2.4 blocks per contest rank her 28th in rejections, while Jenna Stangler is 40th in free throw shooting, making 84.9% of her attempts from the line.
MIXING UP THE LINE-UP: Valparaiso has had eight different players draw starting assignments this season, and not one player has started more than 17 games due to various injuries throughout the season. The Crusaders have had 11 different starting combinations thus far this season.
BRAUN JUST MISSES DOUBLE-DOUBLE: Tamra Braun just missed out on her third double-double against Oakland, scoring 11 points and grabbing nine rebounds. The sophomore also blocked a career-high five shots.
KUIKHOVEN TALLIES SEASON HIGH: Mayella Kuikhoven took advantage of her 22 minutes of action on Monday, scoring a season-high ten points on 4-of-7 shooting. She also dished out three assists and grabbed three rebounds.
BOONE CONTINUES TO TAKE CARE OF THE BALL: Katie Boone has a 2.9 assist-to-turnover ration this season. The senior point guard has dished out 61 assists (4.4/game) while committing just 21 turnovers in 14 games. She has also averaged 9.2 points per game over the last six contests since returning from an injury.
STANGLER AND BOONE EARN MID-CON PRESEASON HONORS: A pair of Crusaders have earned Mid-Continent Conference preseason honors. Jenna Stangler, an All Mid-Con Honorable Mention pick last season, has been voted to the Mid-Con Preseason First Team. The senior averaged 10.6 points and 5.2 rebounds per game for Valpo last year. Senior Katie Boone, a Second Team All-Conference selection last season, has been voted to the Mid-Con Preseason Second Team. Boone averaged 6.4 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 4.3 assists per contest last year.
STANGLER EARNS ALL-TOURNEY TEAM HONORS AT SUBWAY CLASSIC: Jenna Stangler was named to the Subway Classic All-Tournament Team after averaging 19.0 points per game. The senior scored 23 points against Virginia Tech in the opener. Stangler also shot 51.6% from the floor while averaging 36.0 minutes per night.
STANGLER ALSO NAMED TO BLUE SKY CLASSIC ALL-TOURNEY TEAM: Jenna Stangler was named to the Blue Sky Classic All-Tournament Team after averaging 12.0 points and 6.0 rebounds per game against DePaul and Dartmouth.
SCORING BIG AT THE STATE FARM HOOSIER STATE CLASSIC: Valparaiso has won four straight games at the Hoosier State Classic. After falling to Butler in the initial event back in 2000, the Crusaders have dominated the event. Valpo downed Indiana State in 2001, defeated Ball State in 2002, and beat Butler each of the last two seasons including this one.
MYERS NAMED MID-CON PLAYER OF THE WEEK DECEMBER 14: Carrie Myers was named Mid-Continent Conference Player of the Week on December 14 after averaging 17 points and 3.5 assists in two games. She scored a career-high 23 points against Central Michigan and added 11 more against Miami (Ohio).
STANGLER NAMED PLAYER OF THE WEEK JANUARY 11: Jenna Stangler was named the Mid-Continent Conference Player of the Week on January 11 after averaging 19.5 points, 7.0 rebounds, 2.0 steals, and 2.0 assists in a pair of wins against Oakland and Oral Roberts. Stangler shot 72.7% from the floor (16-of-22) in the two games. She had 23 points against Oakland and 16 points against Oral Roberts.
COACH FREEMAN MADE PLEDGE IN FIGHT AGAINST CANCER: Head coach Keith Freeman was looking for fans to help pack the Athletics-Recreation Center to help lead the Crusaders to a win over Notre Dame and at the same time help the American Cancer Society win in the battle with cancer on November 30 While Valpo did not win the game, Freeman donated $1,000 to the American Cancer Society as 2,214 fans watched Valpo play the third-ranked Fighting Irish to the wire.
FREEMAN RANKS AT TOP OF MID-CON'S COACHING LISTS: Keith Freeman is the Mid-Continent Conference's winningest coach of all-time in both overall and conference games. Freeman has posted 187 victories overall, 24 more than any other coach in the league's history. His 109 Mid-Con wins are also 11 more than any other coach in conference history.
BOONE MOVES UP VALPO'S ASSIST CHARTS: Katie Boone has moved into third place on Valpo's career assist list. The senior point guard now has 420 helpers, and trails Maureen Drabicki (1994-1998) by four for second place all-time.
BECHTOLD JOINS BOONE ON ASSIST LIST: Lauren Bechtold has moved into 18th place on the school's all-time assist list. The junior has 176 for her career, 18 shy of 17th place on the rankings.
BOONE ALSO MOVES UP STEAL AND FREE THROW LISTS: Katie Boone has also moved into sixth place on Valpo's career steals chart, while moving into eighth on the free throws made list. Boone now has 174 career thefts and 223 all-time free throws. She is seven steals shy of fifth place on the steals list and seven free throws away from moving up to seventh on that list.
BUZZER BEATERS: Tamra Braun's basket with 0.5 seconds left to give Valpo the win at Southern Utah marked the third time Valpo had beaten the horn this season. Jenna Stangler tied the game and forced overtime against Butler, a game the Crusaders went on to win. Carrie Myers also tied the game and forced an extra session with a three-pointer with just four seconds remaining against Western Illinois. Valpo fell in overtime. Miami (Ohio) also hit a shot with 1.8 seconds left to beat Valpo earlier this year.
BOONE AND STANGLER ON CAREER REBOUNDING LISTS: Katie Boone and Jenna Stangler both rank among the all-time best rebounders in school history. Boone has 470 career boards, ranking 13th in school history. She is 25 rebounds shy of 12th place. Stangler currently occupies 18th place on the school's rebounding list with 423 all-time rebounds. She is five shy of moving into 17th place.
DIALING LONG DISTANCE: After making just 14 three-pointers in their first five games, the Crusaders caught fire on December 8 against Central Michigan, making a school-record 17 treys. Valpo shot 54.8% (17-of-31) from beyond the arc.
MYERS DRAINS SEVEN THREES, ONE OFF SCHOOL MARK: Carrie Myers converted seven times beyond the arc against Central Michigan. The sophomore's total was just one trey off the school record of eight in a game.
WIN AT WASHINGTON STATE FIRST-EVER AGAINST THE PAC-10: Valparaiso's 56-50 victory at Washington State on December 21 marked the school's first win ever against a Pacific-10 team.
SULTAN OF SWATS: Tamra Braun is knocking about every shot she sees away. She now has 78 for her career, moving into sixth place on Valpo's all-time blocked shot list. She is two rejections shy of fifth. In addition, her 47 blocks this year are second most on the Crusaders' single season list. Only Michelle Mader's 110 blocks in 1991-1992 rank ahead of the sophomore.
BOONE AMONG MID-CON'S BEST IN ASSISTS: Katie Boone's 420 career assists have moved her into tenth place on the Mid-Continent Conference's career assist list. The senior guard trails former Crusader Mo Drabicki (1994-1998) by four assists for ninth place on the all-time list and Krisey Sanders (Chicago State, 2000-2003) by eight for eighth place on the league's assist chart.
KEEPING THEM OFF THE SCOREBOARD: Valpo just missed holding IUPUI to a record-low on the scoreboard January 24. The Jaguars scored 36 points, two more than the Crusader record of 34 set against Manchester back on November 22, 1985.
UNABLE TO MISS: Valpo shot 62.2% from the floor against IUPUI, the second best shooting night in school history. The Crusaders were a blistering 77.3% from the field in the second half.
DOWN THE ROAD: Valparaiso will take the short trip to the Windy City on Thursday evening to battle Chicago State in a 5 p.m. contest. The Crusaders then return to the Athletics-Recreation Center on Saturday, February 12, to entertain first place Western Illinois. Tip-off is set for 2:05 p.m. Valpo will conclude a three game stretch in five days on February 14 when the Brown and Gold travels to IUPUI.
CENTENARY NOTES: Centenary enters the contest looking to snap a 17-game losing skid. The Ladies opened the season with a win at home against LeTourneau, but have failed to find the victory column since, including all ten road games. The Ladies fell 87-48 at home against Oral Roberts Monday night.
The Ladies have suffered several injuries throughout the season, and have dressed either six or seven players for each of the last five games.
Centenary has been led by a trio of individuals averaging in double-figures on the year. Laura Kizyte has tallied 13.3 points per night to lead the team. She ranks eighth in the Mid-Continent Conference in scoring.
Jelena Aleksic has added 12.3 points and 5.8 rebounds per game. She has led the Ladies in scoring each of the last two games, including a career-high 26 points at Western Illinois last Saturday. Holli Wilkins has scored 11.6 points per contest.
The Ladies will conclude their current road trip on Monday night, as Centenary heads to Oakland.